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Avg. Price Paid:$52,475 - $75,548
Original MSRP: $89,800 - $132,600
MPG: 16 City / 24 Hwy
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2010 Porsche Panamera Interior

This interior review was written when the 2010 Porsche Panamera was new.

The four-seat interior of the Porsche Panamera strikes an extraordinary balance between indulgent luxury and high-performance spirit.  Like a Porsche 911, it features supportive sport seats and a huge, centrally-located tachometer to remind everyone of its sporting intentions.  Like a Maserati Quattroporte, it offers world-class luxury for four – and rear seat space that matches what is found in some large SUVs. 

  • “The materials are exquisite, the seats are fantastic, the four-seat interior design is the best on the market and the whole thing is so summarily pleasurable it makes me want to empty out the nearest FDIC-insured facility with a Tommy gun, a la John Dillinger.” -- Los Angeles Times
  • “Inside, the Panamera is truly gorgeous, mixing colored leather, wood veneers, carbon fiber, and soft-sheen aluminum in ways that will have Audi's interior designers sitting up and taking notice.” -- Motor Trend
  • “The Panamera's interior is purposeful: From the raft of buttons on its wide center console to its form-fitting bucket seats, when you sit in the Panamera you immediately get the feeling that it's designed for performance driving. That's yet another thing that separates it from the S-Class and others, which are more concerned with comfortable surroundings.” -- Cars.com
  • “The design and materials of the interior ensure that you travel not only in comfort but also in style. Slim, glossy buttons on the center console speak the styling language of expensive Vertu cell phones, and the instrumentation is clearly Porsche, with four gauges clustered around a large central tachometer.” -- Car and Driver
  • “As expected, the Panamera pampers its occupants with yards of leather, fine wood (or carbon fiber), aluminum trim, and high-quality plastics.” -- Autoblog

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Seating

The Porsche Panamera seats four.  The car’s seats are exemplary at all four positions, with little difference in comfort between the front and rear seats.  Porsche engineers developed a new, highly-supportive sport seat for the car, then took the unusual step of mounting the same seat at each of the four seating positions.  This is a fairly unique design approach.  Even most four-seat Grand Touring cars, like the Maserati Quattroporte, use separate front and rear seat designs.  The rear seats of most cars are mounted slightly higher than the front seats. In the Panamera, all four passengers sit very low.

Reviewers say the front seats are extraordinarily comfortable, but the rear seats are exceptional.  Motor Trend explains, “[Former] Porsche boss Wendelin Wiedeking, who's 6ft 2 in., insisted he had to be able to sit comfortably in the back seat.”  Engineers responded, creating one of the most spacious rear seats ever available in any sedan.  The spacious rear quarters, in fact, are part of the reason for the controversial hatchback shape – rear headroom and front headroom are nearly identical.  Rear seat passenger comfort can be increased with optional four-zone climate control, and optional ventilation in all four seats.    

  •  “The Panamera was engineered to seat four passengers in comfort, and that goal has been reached with flying colors. The driver and the front passenger are seated deep between an elevated center console and high door sills. Rear-seat comfort, including headroom and legroom, is on par with that of other regular-wheelbase luxury cars. You just have to get used to sitting lower than in most cars surrounding you.” -- Car and Driver
  • “The four-seat design, with tapered back rests and integrated head restraints, is instantly recognizable as classic Porsche. Unusual at first site, it almost appears as if the automaker has installed its unique front seats in all four passenger positions. The advantage to this layout is immediately apparent as all seating positions are extremely comfortable and supportive, with or without the optional sport seats. As an added benefit, passengers in the rear don't feel relegated to ‘coach.’” -- Autoblog
  • “Front-seat cushioning is firm and supportive. Heated, leather, eight-way power seats are standard, and additional adjustments like side-bolster width and seat-cushion length are optional.” -- Cars.com
  • “You'll look for chances to show off that limousinelike space in back, but it's just for two. Porsche favors giving two folks deluxe accommodations in back instead of compromising to fit three across.  Riding in back 30 miles on the freeze-thaw-cycle-warped interstate highway was as comfy as in front. Leg, knee and head room galore.” -- USA Today

Interior Features

The Panamera is designed to carry four people in opulent surroundings, but emphasize the car’s high-performance nature.  Materials quality and workmanship is world-class, reviewers say, but the dashboard can be intimidating with its extraordinary array of buttons and dials.

Most cars at this price range use a single user-interface that controls all climate and entertainment functions, like BMW’s iDrive system (a version is even found on the Rolls Royce Phantom today), or Audi’s MMI controller.  Porsche designers elected not to develop such a device, opting instead for separate controls for each system.  Since the Panamera gives its drivers far more adjustable settings than most luxury cars, this leads to an incredible number of switches, knobs and buttons.  It can look daunting, but readers should note that most of the reviews published so far concerning the Panamera were written after auto writers spent three days testing the car at a media event Porsche staged in Stuttgart for the car’s debut – and many reviewers say the controls were easy to learn in that time. “After some familiarization,” Autoblog writes, the various “individual operations are readily absorbed.”  Owners get more than three days in the car.  They will likely find the dashboard intuitive in a short time.

  • “Inside, you have dozens of controls to learn. In one test car, there were 56 knobs, buttons and switches on the center panel and ceiling above it for everything from climate control and stereo to exotic suspension and exhaust tuning. Porsche thinks its drivers want a direct-control cockpit and rejects the trendy knob/joystick way of concentrating things in a screen-based control center.” -- USA Today
  • “Although the Panamera boasts a state of the art graphic interface at the center of the dash, Porsche designers believe the buttons are quicker to use than playing hunt-and-peck on a touch screen. And after an hour or so behind the wheel, you see their point -- everything is within easy reach, and there's a clear hierarchy to the layout.” -- Motor Trend
  • “The touch-screen infotainment system is shared with the 911. The highlight of the interior may be the optional audio system, co-developed with Burmester, one of the most renowned manufacturers of top-level audio systems in Europe.” -- Car and Driver
  • "Sure, there are a few too many buttons in here to skip reading the owner's manual, but the Porsche's interior sets a new standard for design, fit and finish, and tactile excellence." -- Edmunds

Cargo

The Panamera’s unique hatchback shape gives it a cargo hold with extraordinary utility.  It measures a little over 15 cubic feet – similar to the space found in many ultra-luxury cars.  Reviewers say, however, that its hatchback design makes it easier to use than a typical trunk.  The rear seats fold, allowing owners to transport large items easily.

  • “The rear seats fold to boost the luggage capacity from 15.7 cu ft to 44.6 cu ft, just under what you can fit behind the third row of a Chevy Suburban, and Porsche offers a roof rack and a trailer hitch (as it did for the 928) as factory options.” -- Motor Trend
  • “The Panamera's cargo area measures 15.7 cubic feet (15.2 in the Turbo), which is similar in size to the trunks offered by the S-Class (16.3), 7 Series (14) and A8 (14.6). However, the Panamera's hatchback design affords it more versatility compared with those sedans” -- Cars.com
  • “We opened the power-assisted rear hatch and dropped in two pieces of checked luggage, two carry-on bags, and our large camera bag. It swallowed all with room to spare.” -- Autoblog
Review Last Updated: 1/11/10

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